Skip to main content

https://publicguardian.blog.gov.uk/2024/02/13/your-questions-answered-attorneys-witnesses-and-certificate-providers/

Your questions answered: attorneys, witnesses and certificate providers

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Attorneys, FAQs, LPA, Your questions answered

[English] - [Cymraeg]

Image reads Attorneys, witnesses and certificate providers

We receive thousands of phone calls each week from people looking for help and information on the lasting power of attorney (LPA) process. This blog series answers your questions by breaking down the different stages of your LPA journey.   

Here we look at common questions about attorneys, witnesses and certificates providers. See also:

Completing forms

Includes signing forms in order

Payments and fees

Includes cheques and applying for remissions and exemptions

Using your LPA

Includes reference numbers, activation keys and access codes

Reporting and making changes to your LPA

Includes reporting a death and changing address 

 

Can anyone be an attorney? 

Yes, as long as the person is aged 18 or over and able to understand the responsibility of becoming an attorney. 

If you’re looking for someone to help with your finances, consider someone with a good history of managing money. If that person has been declared bankrupt, they won’t be able to act as a property and finance attorney but may still be able to act as a health and welfare attorney. 

You should always choose people you trust. They could be a friend or family member or you can also appoint a professional such as a solicitor to be your attorney. 

A professional will usually charge for their time. Speak to them about any charges beforehand.  

 

If I live abroad, can I still have an LPA? 

If you are the donor and live outside England or Wales, there may be complications and you might wish to seek independent legal advice. For example, there is a ‘habitual residency test’ which usually means that the donor will need to have property or assets in England and Wales for a Property and Financial Affairs LPA to be effective. 

 

I want to appoint a family member as an attorney, but they live abroad. Can I still appoint them? 

Your attorney does not need to live in the UK or be a British citizen.  

In order to create the LPA all attorneys must sign the LPA document in person, in black pen and then have a witness sign the document too. 

If your attorney lives abroad, you’ll need to post the LPA forms to them to sign and have them posted back to you. 

Once they’ve been signed and registered your attorney can act from anywhere in the world. However, when appointing your attorneys, make sure you’re clear on how you want them to act, especially if one lives in a different country, as it could cause practical issues later.  

 

Who can witness an LPA? 

A donor’s signature must be witnessed by: 

  • someone aged 18 or over 
  • not a named attorney or replacement attorney 

An attorney’s signature must be witnessed by: 

  • someone aged 18 or over 
  • who is not the donor  

Attorneys or replacement attorneys can witness each other’s signature but not the donor’s. Signatures can’t be witnessed online and must be done in person. 

 

Who can be a certificate provider for my LPA?

A Certificate Provider must: 

  • not be related to the donor or attorney(s) 
  • be aged 18 or over 
  • have known the donor well for at least two years 
  • Not be classed as an employee or employer of the donor or attorney(s) 

They sign the LPA after the donor and the donor’s witness. Their role is to make sure the donor can understand independently what they are signing and is not being forced into doing it. Ideally a certificate provider will speak to the donor separately and privately before signing and witnessing the document. 

The certificate provider could also be a professional - someone with the skills to know if the donor is able to make the decision to make an LPA. For example: 

  • a registered healthcare professional, such as the donor’s GP 
  • a solicitor, barrister or advocate 
  • a registered social worker 
  • an independent mental capacity advocate  

You can read more about certificate providers on ‘A guide to making your lasting power of attorney (LPA)’.

 

 

[English] - [Cymraeg]

atwrneiod, tystion a darparwyr tystysgrif

Rydyn ni’n cael cannoedd o alwadau ffôn bob wythnos gan bobl sy’n chwilio am help a gwybodaeth ynghylch llawer o wahanol bethau. Mae’r gyfres hon o flogiau’n ateb eich cwestiynau drwy ddadansoddi gwahanol gamau eich taith Atwrneiaeth Arhosol.

Yma rydym yn edrych ar gwestiynau cyffredin ynghylch atwrneiod, tystion a darparwyr tystysgrifau.Gweler hefyd:

Llenwi ffurflenni

Yn cynnwys llofnodi ffurflenni mewn trefn

Taliadau a ffioedd

Yn cynnwys sieciau a gwneud cais am ostyngiadau ac esemptiadau

Defnyddio eich LPA

Yn cynnwys cyfeirnodau, allweddi ysgogi a chodau mynediad

Adrodd a gwneud newidiadau i’ch LPA

Yn cynnwys rhoi gwybod am farwolaeth a newid cyfeiriad

 

Oes modd i unrhyw un fod yn atwrnai?

Oes, cyn belled â bod yr unigolyn yn18 oed neu’n hŷn ac yn deall y cyfrifoldeb o fod yn atwrnai.

Os ydych chi’n chwilio am rywun i helpu gyda’ch materion ariannol, ystyriwch rywun sydd â hanes da o reoli arian. Os ydy’r unigolyn hwnnw wedi cael ei wneud yn fethdalwr, ni fydd yn gallu gweithredu fel atwrnai eiddo ac arian, ond bydd efallai y bydd yn dal yn gallu gweithredu fel atwrnai iechyd a lles.

Dylech bob amser ddewis pobl yr ydych yn ymddiried ynddynt. Gallent fod yn ffrind neu’n aelod o’r teulu neu gallwch hefyd benodi gweithiwr proffesiynol fel cyfreithiwr i fod yn atwrnai i chi.

Bydd gweithiwr proffesiynol fel arfer yn codi tâl am ei amser. Siaradwch â nhw am unrhyw gostau ymlaen llaw.

 

Os wyf yn byw dramor, a oes modd i mi gael LPA o hyd?

Os mai chi yw’r rhoddwr ac yn byw y tu allan i Gymru neu Loegr, efallai y bydd cymhlethdodau ac efallai y byddwch am geisio cyngor cyfreithiol annibynnol. Er enghraifft, ceir ‘prawf preswylio arferol’ sydd fel arfer yn golygu y bydd angen i’r rhoddwr gael eiddo neu asedau yng Nghymru a Lloegr er mwyn i LPA Eiddo a Materion Ariannol fod yn effeithiol.

 

Rydw i eisiau penodi aelod o’r teulu fel atwrnai, ond mae’n byw dramor. Oes modd i mi eu penodi?

Nid oes angen i’ch atwrnai fyw yn y DU na bod yn ddinesydd Prydeinig.

Er mwyn creu’r atwrneiaeth atodol rhaid i bob atwrnai lofnodi’r ddogfen LPA ei hun, gyda phin du a chael tyst i lofnodi’r ddogfen hefyd.

Os yw eich atwrnai’n byw dramor bydd angen i chi bostio’r ffurflenni LPA ato i’w llofnodi a sicrhau ei fod yn eu postio’n ôl atoch chi.

Ar ôl i’r ffurflenni gael eu llofnodi a’u cofrestru, bydd eich atwrnai yn gallu gweithredu o unrhyw le yn y byd. Fodd bynnag, wrth benodi eich atwrneiod, gwnewch yn siŵr eich bod chi’n gwybod  sut rydych chi eisiau iddyn nhw weithredu, yn enwedig os yw un yn byw mewn gwlad wahanol, oherwydd gallai hyn achosi problemau ymarferol yn nes ymlaen.

 

Pwy sy’n cael bod yn dyst i atwrneiaeth arhosol?

Rhaid i lofnod y rhoddwr gael ei dystio gan:

  • rywun 18 oed neu hŷn
  • heb fod yn atwrnai a enwir nac yn atwrnai wrth gefn

Rhaid i lofnod yr atwrnai gael ei dystio gan:

  • rywun 18 oed neu hŷn
  • nad yw'n rhoddwr

Gall atwrneiod neu atwrneiod wrth gefn fod yn dyst i lofnod ei gilydd ond nid llofnod y rhoddwr. Ni ellir tystio i lofnodion ar-lein a rhaid gwneud hynny wyneb yn wyneb.

 

Pwy sy’n cael bod yn ddarparwr tystysgrif ar gyfer fy atwrneiaeth arhosol?
Rhaid i Ddarparwr Tystysgrif:

  • beidio â bod yn perthyn i’r rhoddwr neu’r atwrnai (atwrneiod),
  • bod yn 18 oed neu’n hŷn
  • wedi adnabod y rhoddwr yn dda ers o leiaf dwy flynedd
  • Peidio â chael eich ystyried yn gyflogai neu’n gyflogwr i’r rhoddwr neu’r atwrnai (atwrneiod)

Byddant yn llofnodi’r LPA ar ôl y rhoddwr a thyst y rhoddwr. Eu rôl yw sicrhau bod y rhoddwr yn gallu deall yn annibynnol yr hyn y mae’n ei lofnodi ac nad yw’n cael ei orfodi i’w wneud. Yn ddelfrydol, bydd darparwr tystysgrif yn siarad â’r rhoddwr ar wahân ac yn breifat cyn llofnodi a thystio’r ddogfen.

Gallai’r darparwr tystysgrif hefyd fod yn weithiwr proffesiynol – rhywun sydd â’r sgiliau i wybod a yw’r rhoddwr yn gallu gwneud y penderfyniad i wneud LPA. Er enghraifft:

  • gweithiwr gofal iechyd proffesiynol cofrestredig, fel meddyg teulu’r rhoddwr
  • cyfreithiwr, bargyfreithiwr neu eiriolwr
  • gweithiwr cymdeithasol cofrestredig
  • eiriolwr galluedd meddyliol annibynnol

Mae rhagor o wybodaeth am ddarparwyr tystysgrif ar gael yma:

 

 

Sharing and comments

Share this page

11 comments

  1. Comment by Rob Anderson posted on

    Beyond choosing people who you trust, and ideally who are also reliable at managing money, it would be good if the OPG provided more specific advice on the potential advantages (and/or risks) of appointing more than one attorney.

    Also, in what personal or other situations would using a registered professional as a certificate provider be recommended by the OPG? This is a really key choice that a donor has to make.

    Reply
  2. Comment by Rob Anderson posted on

    I am very surprised that the advice on your Blog suggests the following expectation so loosely: "Ideally a certificate provider will speak to the donor separately and privately before signing and witnessing the document."
    Given the importance of not having the attorney present when the certificate provider discusses and forms a judgement about whether the attorney has been freely chosen by the donor, surely the recommendation could be much more direct here? For example:
    "Before signing and witnessing the document, the certificate provider should speak to the donor separately and privately. This is to assure themselves that the donor fully understands the powers and responsibilities they are giving to their attorney(s) and that they have freely chosen who their attorney(s) will be".

    Reply
    • Replies to Rob Anderson>

      Comment by rebeccaparker1 posted on

      Hi Rob

      Thank you for your comment. We've provided a link to our certificate provider guidance within the answer to ‘Who can be a certificate provider for my LPA’, which addresses the topics you raised but thank you for your feedback, which we will take on board.

      OPG Communications team

      Reply
  3. Comment by Gideon VIljoen posted on

    Hi, I'm hoping you can assist or point us in the right direction.
    My partner's father lives in Spain and has no assets (other than his UK-derived pensions) in the UK. As he is in his 80's, we feel he would benefit from having a LPOA. Should we get this process done from the UK or would it be advisable to action from Spain?
    Look forward to your response

    Reply
    • Replies to Gideon VIljoen>

      Comment by rebeccaparker1 posted on

      Hi Gideon

      Thank you for your comment. If the donor lives outside England or Wales, there may be complications and you might wish to seek independent legal advice.

      OPG communications team

      Reply
  4. Comment by Keith Windsor posted on

    I found this information on line:

    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/211170/LPA112_property_and_financial_affairs_guidance.pdf

    It includes the following guidance in Chapter 3, About page 7:

    ! To avoid rejection of your LPA when
    applying to register …
    If you do not want any people to be told when your LPA
    is registered, you must have two certificate providers
    – one to complete part B and the second to complete
    continuation sheet B (for guidance on certificate providers
    see page 30).

    I called the OPG this morning and was told that this is not correct, that if I do not choose to notify anyone, I do not need a second Certificate Provider.

    Which is correct, the online information or the telephone response?

    If the information is wrong, then it should be taken offline to avoid confusion.

    Thank you

    Reply
  5. Comment by P Smith posted on

    Me and my husband are attorneys to my mothers Lasting Power of Attorney can we witness each others signature?

    Reply
    • Replies to P Smith>

      Comment by rebeccaparker1 posted on

      Hello,

      Yes. Attorneys or replacement attorneys can witness each other's signatures. This is explained in more detail in the 'who can be a witness?' question above.

      OPG communications team

      Reply
  6. Comment by Gloria Lynn Jones posted on

    I am making a lasting power of attorney. My husband and my son will be the attorneys. Can they witness each others signature?

    Reply
    • Replies to Gloria Lynn Jones>

      Comment by rebeccaparker1 posted on

      Hello Gloria,

      Yes. Attorneys or replacement attorneys can witness each other's signatures. This is explained in more detail in the 'who can be a witness?' question above.

      OPG communications team

      Reply

Leave a comment

We only ask for your email address so we know you're a real person

By submitting a comment you understand it may be published on this public website. Please read our privacy notice to see how the GOV.UK blogging platform handles your information.